Will the Boston Red Sox bring back an old friend while attempting to fix their lack of right-handed bats in the everyday lineup?
The Red Sox could explore reunions with Justin Turner, J.D. Martinez, Hunter Renfroe or Adam Duvall to aid their cause, and likely will be in the mix for most of the aforementioned sluggers. The best fit might just be an outfielder who was on the roster last season.
“Duvall performed well for the Red Sox last season, belting 21 home runs with an .834 OPS in 92 games,” MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand wrote Sunday. “Given the left-handedness of Boston’s outfield — especially if the Red Sox trade Alex Verdugo this winter — Duvall could come back to give the team a righty power bat in the outfield.”
Duvall hit .247 with 47 extra-base hits including the aforementioned 21 homers, 58 RBIs and a 119 OPS+ in 2023 despite missing a good chunk of the season due to a wrist injury.
The 35-year-old slugger has a suitable swing for Fenway Park and would be an affordable option to balance the lineup and provide right-handed power. As Feinsand noted, he’d also balance the outfield group and possibly allow Masataka Yoshida to move to the designated hitter role for the majority of the season — which would improve the team’s overall defense.
Duvall played well enough to warrant another contract in Boston, though you’d hope Red Sox chief baseball officer Craig Breslow would spend bigger in the starting pitching market if he plans on saving money on the offensive improvements.